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The Eighth Menorah

Overview


At Sunday school Sam and his classmates are making menorahs for Hanukkah gifts, but Sam worries that his family already has enough menorahs.
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Overview


At Sunday school Sam and his classmates are making menorahs for Hanukkah gifts, but Sam worries that his family already has enough menorahs.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
09/16/2013
Sam knows that his family already has plenty of menorahs, so when his Hebrew school teacher announces a menorah project for Hanukkah, Sam fears his will be useless. He works diligently on it and keeps it hidden, but still worries it won’t serve a purpose. It is only when his grandmother and her friends share their own predicament that Sam comes to realize his menorah will find a beautiful home. Brightly colored and empathic pictures by Hughes bring this charming Hanukkah story to life. Ages 4–7. Author’s agent: Steven Chudney, the Chudney Agency. Illustrator’s agent: the Bright Agency. (Oct.)
From the Publisher

"This heartwarming story features an anxious little boy that kids will easily relate to, along with a loving family." Booklist, September 15, 2013

"Brightly colored and emphatic pictures by Hughes bring this charming Hanukkah story to life." Publishers Weekly, September 13, 2013

"This evenly paced story explores a common dilemma in Jewish families--that of multiple menorahs--and gives a little boy the opportunity to do some independent problem-solving. . . .Sam and his Grammy are a simpatico pair, one readers of all ages will be able to relate to." Kirkus Reviews, September 1, 2013

Children's Literature - Lois Rubin Gross
It is a well-known fact that you can never have too many menorahs for the holiday of Hanukkah, but Sam has not gotten that message. His Hebrew school class goes on a nature hike and to collect bits and pieces, twigs, shiny stones, and acorns, to make unique hanukiot to give to their families. Sam knows that his family already has seven holiday candelabrum and he does not think that there is room for another one. Each of his family's menorahs has its own story and history. Where will Sam's homemade one fit in with the many antique, unique, and gifted ones his parents light? Then Sam has a wonderful idea. He speaks with his Grandmother, who has just down-sized to a condominium, and discovers that her building does not allow residents to light candles in their apartments. An electrical menorah does not seem special enough, so Sam gives Grammy his homemade menorah and the candles that go with it. This is a book for a Jewish audience because the actual story of Hanukkah is glossed over and there is no glossary for words like words like "mensch" which, while part of the American Jewish vernacular, may not be known to an outside audience. Nor is there an explanation of the shamash candle, the candle that lights the other eight. Sam's Grammy and her friends are blessedly modern looking. However, Sam's menorah, which has been touted throughout the book as an extra special craft project, looks rather plain and unadorned. Back matter includes instructions on how to play the dreidl game. Altogether, this is an additional purchase that will do best in synagogue libraries or personal collections. Reviewer: Lois Rubin Gross
School Library Journal
10/01/2013
PreS-Gr 1—When Sam's Hebrew school teacher announces that the students will make menorahs to give to their parents for Hanukkah, Sam is worried. Though his creation, shaped like a hill and decorated with twigs, pebbles, and a special silvery rock, looks fine, he knows that his family already has seven special menorahs and doesn't need another. Luckily, his Grammy provides the solution-and her building receives a new menorah for its community room. A brief mention of the holiday's origins is woven into the text, and directions on how to play dreidel are appended. The cheerful cartoon illustrations complement the easygoing story; the only quibble is that most drawings of Sam's menorah don't show the silvery rock, twigs, or pebbles mentioned in the text.—Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
2013-09-01
This evenly paced story explores a common dilemma in Jewish families—that of multiple menorahs—and gives a little boy the opportunity to do some independent problem-solving. One more menorah may be just one too many for Sam's household, and at Hebrew school, Sam complains about the menorah-making activity. "My family has seven menorahs! Maybe I can make something else." Undaunted, the teacher encourages Sam to make one anyway, so Sam resolves to give it to Grammy. Grammy's weekly phone call reveals that Hanukkah will be quite different in her new building, as open flames are not permitted in the apartments—just in the community room. Even so, everybody just uses the electric menorah. After some reflection, Sam decides his newly created menorah will be the perfect Hanukkah surprise for his grandmother and her condo neighbors, and on the first night, he gives it to her so she can share it and light it in the community room with her friends. Childlike illustrations in muted soft colors depict a particularly appealing Hebrew school classroom and a modern elderly city dweller in striped socks and pink slippers. The dialogue-heavy text is delightfully natural: "Nuh uh," Sam replies during a guessing game with Grammy. Sam and his Grammy are a simpatico pair, one readers of all ages will be able to relate to. (Picture book. 5-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807518922
  • Publisher: Whitman, Albert & Company
  • Publication date: 9/1/2013
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,370,146
  • Age range: 4 - 7 Years
  • Lexile: AD530L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author


Lauren L. Wohl has loved children's books all her life: first as a child reader; then as a school librarian, a publisher, a mom, a reviewer, and now as a grandmother. She is the author of Matzoh Mouse. A native New Yorker, she lives with her husband in South Beach, Florida, and in Lenox, Massachusetts.

Laura Hughes is the illustrator of Rabbit on the Run and studied illustration at Kingston University in London. She lives in East London, England.

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